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Yes. New clause 55 is very reasonable. It asks, first, for a 12-monthly assessment of the impact of the protocol on Northern Ireland; secondly, that if there is divergence in trade policy, the administrative costs of the impact should not be borne by the private sector in Northern Ireland; and thirdly, that it is done independently, to ensure that the true costs are not glossed over. It is a very reasonable new clause, adding to Labour’s amendment 1, and I hope that the Government will accept it. They want to give an assurance that they do not want there to be a detrimental impact on Northern Ireland. The only way we will know whether the terms of the protocol are having an impact on Northern Ireland is to make a regular assessment of the protocol, the regulations enforced as a result of it and the costs.
Our first set of amendments would require the Government to define unfettered access on the face of the Bill and would oblige Ministers and devolved Administrations to ensure that unfettered access. The second set is about representation on the Joint Committee. It will be a powerful Committee, and therefore it is important that there is Northern Ireland representation on it. The third set is on consultation with the Northern Ireland Assembly. I have already said to the Minister in an intervention—
Two hours having elapsed since the commencement of proceedings, the debate was interrupted (Programme Order,
The Chair put forthwith the Question already proposed from the Chair (
The Chair then put forthwith the Questions necessary for the disposal of the business to be concluded at that time (
Clauses 18 to 20 ordered to stand part of the Bill.